I pray that you woke with joy in your heart. But perhaps, you didn’t. I would love to tell you that being a Christian means I walk around in total joy all the time. But you know, and I know, that life deals us some hard knocks. This morning you might be experiencing a period of suffering. Perhaps you are mired in fear or sadness? Maybe free-flowing anxiety has you shaking in your shoes? What are we to do during those dark times?
We have choices and 1 Corinthians 16:13 has an action plan that we can adopt during our stormy times. First, scripture tells us to “keep alert.” I think this means that we must monitor our moods; we need to acknowledge that what we are feeling is real. Name the emotion: tired, boredom, frustration, or grief. We are going to have difficult times. Peter says that we will have to endure various trials (1 Peter 1:6) and Jesus told his disciples, “In this world you will have many trials and sorrows” (John 16:33). We can’t deal with what we are unwilling to face.
Step two, “stand firm in your faith.” Perhaps my favorite scripture is Matthew 11:28 which says, “Come to me all ye that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” Tell Jesus all about your suffering; he cares, and I believe that just by getting it off your chest, the rest he promised will come upon you. You have a friend in Jesus. Rely on your faith.
Next Paul tells us to “be courageous and strong.” Sometimes, we might just need to have a good cry or allow ourselves to have a “sad” day. But, notice, I said “day.” In reality, we can’t sit around and wait for the storm to be over. It is what we do in the “midst” of the storm that determines if we are acting courageously. You and I just might have to learn how to dance in the rain. Many years ago, a friend gave me a ragged slip of paper with the words “Your feet can learn the steps, but only your spirit can dance!” Get out of bed and put one foot in front of the other. Step! Step! Now a little faster. Listen to the thunder and pretend it is God tapping out the beat on his heavenly drum. Be courageous and maybe a little nutty. Dance in the rain.
Prayer: Lord, I praise you for your constant and abiding presence in times of trouble. Amen
Loving you and urging you to dance, Linda